Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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A post-colonial reading of Vaisakhi: unveiling the Indo-Canadian Sikh identity through Canadian media

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

In this paper, I explore the ways in which concerns over nation and race have shaped “Canadian identity”. I read a range of texts of mainstream Canadian news representations of the Indo-Canadian Sikh community from the early 20th century to 2007. I focus specifically on the cultural celebration of Vaisakhi, a festival to commemorate the Northern Indian (Punjabi) New Year and harvest as well as to celebrate the formal anniversary of the Sikh faith. On the streets of Vancouver and Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, Vaisakhi is celebrated as a walk through designated areas where the Indo-Canadian Sikh community hosts the wider community with complementary food, beverages and entertainment. This paper draws on Canadian news narratives around the Indo-Canadian community and the very public celebration of Vaisakhi. Applying a post-colonial critique to the past and present mainstream Canadian news reveals the persistence of colonial ideology in contemporary Canadian culture.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
C
Department: 
Dept. of Women's Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Betty lambert's plays for children: A feminist approach to theatre for young audiences

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

English Canadian playwright, Betty Lambert, the focus of this thesis, started writing children’s plays in the 1960’s. These plays reflect her feminist ideals that became prominent in her later work, such as in her best-known play, Jennie’s Story. Analyzing Lambert’s The Riddle Machine and Song of the Serpent, the relationship between feminism and theatre for young audiences can be discerned by looking at methods of realism, moral education and gender, and “empowerment through the idea of ‘Truth.’” These are explored using a combination of Bertolt Brecht and Augusto Boal’s writings on theatre, Dorothy Heathcote’s ideas on drama and education, and Lawrence Kohlberg and Carole Gilligan’s theories of ‘moral education.’ Using analysis of Lambert’s children’s plays, my thesis proves the importance of provoking a feminist consciousness from a young age to disrupt gender stereotypes and inspire children to pursue their goals. I speculate on how Lambert’s plays can inform contemporary theatre.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
J
Department: 
Dept. of Women's Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Tuition rebates and the teaching support staff union: An examination of the textual coordination of university bargaining

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

For the past decade unionized teaching assistants in Canada have secured tuition rebates through collective bargaining. Graduate student bargaining is rooted in public sector regulation, social organization, and state formation. I examine how ruling relations coordinate teaching assistants’ inability to secure a tuition waiver in the negotiation of the Teaching Support Staff Union’s latest contract which is dated from 2004-2010. In this thesis, I examine two texts that were influential in bargaining. First, I look at a Labour Relations Board decision over a TA strike at the University of British Columbia. Second, I will examine a leaked document from the Public Sector Employer’s Council dictating the bargain process to the University. Dorothy Smith’s “Institutional Ethnography” and “Mapping the Social Relations of Struggle” as methods of inquiry allow me to see how texts are coordinated in University bargaining and what teaching assistants can do to resist them.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
C
Department: 
Dept. of Women's Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Selling the menopausal body: A critical analysis of physician targeted HRT advertising -AND- Community-university co-operative model case study: A reflexive and exploratory look at one CBR experience

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

Selling the Menopausal Body: Over time, what role has physician targeted, North America, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) advertising played in the medicalization of menopause? How have these ads constructed HRT knowledge for physicians and women? Employing close textual analysis, I examine several decades of medical journal HRT advertising and place this analysis within existing critical feminist critiques of HRT. I show how these ads systematically and negatively portray women, their bodies and menopause. Community-University Co-operative Model Case Study: Can university involved community-based research (CBR) be useful to communities? To what degree can individuals from universities participate in CBR? From a critical perspective, challenging existing models and the current state of university-centred CBR, I present a detailed case study of a community-university collaborative CBR project, Three Days in the Fire Pit, arguing a strong case for a model that successfully navigates CBR and avoids university control.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
C
Department: 
Dept. of Women's Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Essays (M.A.)

Reading GAM in craigslist personal ads: Constructing gay Asian males during the negotiation of anal intercourse -and- Remembering spatially: Refocussing the history of Vancouver's gay community

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

The identity “gay Asian male” (GAM) is proposed and contested in online personal ads, where ethnicity and other visible traits are used to describe individuals as attractive suitors and request or refuse potential partners. This paper explores the relationship between identity and desire, focusing on representations of GAM in craigslist ads, a site where men seek men for sexual encounters. In particular, it considers GAM as constructed by cultural meanings derived from characteristics set by HIV/AIDS prevention literature. Existing historical geographies of gay communities in North America, including local media representations of Vancouver’s gay community, follow an identity politics metanarrative of gay liberation and subculture formation. This paper challenges this metanarrative, reframing Vancouver’s gay community’s formation by considering real estate events, key community relationships—highlighted in 1981, and nostalgic memory. The interaction of these components contributes to the maintenance of the community’s political visibility and concentration along Vancouver’s Davie Street.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
C
Department: 
Dept. of Women's Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Essays (M.A.)

“Too posh to push" or too quick to cut? Deconstructing media representations of elective caesarean sections

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

In March 2004, Canadian obstetrician Mary Hannah published a controversial article about elective caesarean sections in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. Hannah argues that “a growing number of women are requesting delivery by elective caesarean section without an accepted ‘medical indication’” and suggests that physicians should support women’s requests (2004: 813- 814). Despite a paucity of research surrounding elective caesarean sections, many print media journalists and authors throughout Canada accept Hannah’s claim, and allege that “too posh to push” women are responsible for high rates of caesarean sections and birthing interventions. I situate media representations of elective caesarean sections in the context of Canada’s evolving maternity system, and explore how media reporters manage birthing “uncertainties” through the construction of “truths” about women’s birthing choices. Media authors’ insistence on blaming mothers in media representations of elective caesarean sections obscures the broader cultural, social and economic contexts in which women give birth.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Cindy Patton
Department: 
Dept. of Women's Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

"One index finger on the mouse scroll bar and the other on my clit" : slash writers' views on pornography, censorship, feminism and risk

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2001
Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Theses (Dept. of Women's Studies) / Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)